Lambert - Irish duo are vital
Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert says that Shay Given and Richard Dunne will bring vital experience to his team this year.
Last Updated: 11/07/12 2:08pm
Republic of Ireland internationals Richard Dunne and Shay Given are due back in training at Aston Villa next week, and new manager Paul Lambert says their experience will be important for his squad this season.
Dunne and Given have been given extra time off after taking part in the Republic of Ireland's disappointing European Championship campaign, and their return to training will be their first chance to link up with their new boss.
The centre-back and goalkeeper received praise from Lambert for their achievements both at Villa and throughout their careers, and their club manager said that their trip to Euro 2012 would still be an honour for them.
Lambert has spoken to both players and is confident that Ireland's poor tournament this summer will not affect his players' performances this season.
"They're two experienced lads," Lambert told the club's official website. "They're not kids and they've been round the course before.
"I spoke to the two of them earlier on in the Euros. It was a hard tournament for them, with what happened.
"They've done great for Villa in the past and had fantastic football careers let alone anything else. They've been over the course before and once I see them I'll have another chat with them.
"Shay and Richard have had two fabulous careers at both international and club levels. Shay has about 955 caps and Richard has a lot too. They know the game.
"They aren't young kids. They know the high level of football it is, which is great. It's a great honour for them to have taken part in a major tournament.
"OK, it might not have gone the way they wanted it to go but they were still part of it. I am pretty sure the experience will be good."